hi, i grew up on rockingham st.. it was a small place.. somewhat grotty... with a big car park.. was a bit like the royal standard & the other pubs around the area.. how comes you interested to know what it was like? have you been visited by a ghost?
My mum and dad owned the pub in 1981/82 time (before I was born) and they turned it around from being a wreck into a nice-ish pub. They still had a few murders there, and my dad was threatened with a shotgun one night. He also used to have 40 or 50 handers, and do lock-ins, where he used to lock the troublemakers in and send for the old bill to come and arrest them all!
I worked there as a live-in barman after finishing uni for a memorable 6 months in 1975. The pump bar was frequented mostly by a couple of extended local families, including an "uncle" who would look at any piece of jewellery for you. The posh side, with music, was sometimes visited by heavies, including members of the Flying Squad (hard to distinguish from the criminals) if there was trouble expected. Once a week the bar would be closed for a couple of hours for a gang of scaffolders to line up and be paid cash for the week by their boss, with free drinks at the bar. There was very little trouble in the pub itself, although violence never felt far away. I myself was threatened a few times for being "nosey" (or, as I thought it, being conversational). I hope you are happy in your home, I don't think there were any ghosts.
In the 1960's, the pub had a large car park fronting on to the NKR and Falmouth Road. At one corner, opposite The Crossways Mission (don't know if the church or mission is still there), was a "Jellied Eel Stall".
Opening during the evenings, the owner would lay out small saucers of assorted shell fish, welks,shrimps, eels and so on. There was a very large deep enamel bowl containing the jelly and cold eels. He would dish up a portion of the eels from the bowl, and you could help yourself to a side dish of freshly cut portions of dry white bread.
It became a meeting point for passers by, drinkers from The County Terrace and locals. I seem to remember there being some coloured light bulbs either above the stall or maybe on a line overhead.
Behind the pub, was an impsosing building, which was the Welsh Prebyterian Chapel, which became the Brotherhood Of The Cross and Star.
My Grandad was a regular in this pub for years,was friends with the owners in the 80's/early 90's and i remember running around the pub as a child.
the only vivid memory i have is of the family that owned the pub, (ginger fella and his wife and daughters) and a charity night that involved about 6 80's exercise bikes.
Funny you should mention shellfish, When i was 7 i got a dose of Hepatitis A from a van selling shellfish. My Mum used to tell my Grandad off for buying it for me, but he didn't listen (as all good grandparents do lol!) anyway one hot summer day the bloke came round to the County, i ate some prawns and Bingo! Hepatitis A. Couldn't eat or drink for about 6 weeks... then one day i smelt some smoked haddock cooking and my stomach rumbled, thank god it never put me off fish!